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Announcing the Woody Barlow Poetry Contest

eMerge Magazine is proud to announce the Woody Barlow Poetry Contest, an annual competition that celebrates the art of poetry and honors the memory of Woody Barlow, a renowned poet and long-time resident of Eureka Springs, Arkansas.

The contest is open to all poets, both emerging and professional, from around the world. Poets may enter the contest by submitting a packet of 1-3 original and unpublished poems, written in English and not exceeding 30 lines. The theme is open, and the judges will be looking for poems that are creative, compelling, and exhibit a mastery of language and form.

Submissions will open on June 1, 2023 and close on August 1, 2023. The top five poems will receive $100 each. There will be no First, Second Third, etc., places. All winning poems will be published in eMerge and in the ECHO Anthology. In addition, poetry winners will be considered for Pushcart Nominations each year.

Charles Templeton, eMerge Editor Emeritus, is the creator and sponsor of this fellowship. "As a lover of poetry, I have been deeply inspired by the works of my late friend and poet, Woody Barlow," Templeton shares. "Woody's imagination allows us to transcend the limits of our current reality and to envision a better, brighter future. His powerful words have touched the hearts and souls of countless individuals, and his legacy will continue to inspire new generations of writers and poets. Woody's ability to speak truthfully about the struggles and joys of life, through his words, has left an indelible mark on my interpretation of the world.

In honor of Woody Barlow's memory, I decided to create a poetry contest that celebrates his life and his contribution to the world of poetry. The contest will invite poets from all walks of life to submit their best works. The aim is to encourage new and emerging poets, as well as established poets, to draw inspiration from Woody's legacy, and to continue to push the boundaries of what poetry can achieve.

Woody Barlow's poetry has taught me that language can be both beautiful and powerful, and that it has the potential to heal, to connect, and to inspire. Through this poetry contest, I hope to continue Woody's legacy by providing a platform for new and diverse voices to be heard and celebrated, just as he did throughout his life."

For more information on how to apply when this contest opens, follow the Writers' Colony at Dairy Hollow on social media to see future announcements or contact current eMerge Editor, Joy Clark, at with any questions.

The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow is a 501(c)3 nonprofit whose mission is to nurture writers of all backgrounds, genres, and levels of experience in a supportive environment that builds community, stimulates new thinking, energizes creative expression, and optimizes productivity. Since opening its doors to writers in 2000, the Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow has made a lasting impact on the arts and literary communities hosting over 1,700 writers from 48 states and 13 countries.

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